Condusiv Undelete 11 sports a new user interface, cloud integration, and more robust control over the file system resources Undelete either tracks or ignores.

Timothy Warner

Timothy Warner is a Microsoft Cloud and Datacenter Management Most Valuable Professional (MVP) who is based in Nashville, TN. Check out his Azure and Windows Server video training at Pluralsight, and feel free to reach out to Tim via Twitter.

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The watchword with Condusiv Undelete is "convenience." The bottom line is that it's a heck of a lot easier to restore accidentally or intentionally deleted files with a couple mouse clicks than it is to fish the files from a backup archive.

Or consider a user who does a Shift+Delete to bypass the Recycle Bin, deletes from the command line, from applications or deletes files from a network share. Again, without a utility like Undelete, you and your user may very well be hosed—or at the very least, greatly inconvenienced.

Condusiv Undelete is client-server file recovery software that runs on the Microsoft Windows operating system. Please refer to the full Undelete product review I wrote for 4sysops for a general introduction to Undelete. Today I'd like to walk you through the new features Condusiv added to their brand-new version 11 release.

In today's review, I will focus on centralized continuous data protection with Undelete Server. However, be aware that Condusiv sells Undelete Professional for individual workstations.

Revamped user interface ^

Undelete 11 now sports a familiar, File Explorer-like user interface, using the Ribbon element you're accustomed to seeing in modern Windows applications. Undelete Professional will even pick up any Desktop Theme color accents you apply in Windows 10 and is now much more responsive.

The new Undelete 11 user interface

The new Undelete 11 user interface

Expanded  file version protection ^

Historically, Undelete saves n previous versions of deleted Microsoft Office files. In Undelete 11 we now can add custom file types to the centralized Recovery Bin.

As you can see in the next figure, you open the Recovery Bin Settings window, navigate to Versions, and click Add to list.

Adding PDF support to the Undelete 11 Recovery Bin

Adding PDF support to the Undelete 11 Recovery Bin

Improved search and recovery performance ^

On a busy file server, the Undelete Server Recovery Bin can over time grow to include many recoverable files. To easily find your recoverable files, Undelete 11 introduces a new one-click search interface. As shown in the following screenshot, you can conduct your deleted file search along three axes:

  • Name & location: Your search can include traditional Windows wildcard characters like ? and *
  • Date: Specify a date or date range on which the files were either created or deleted
  • Owner/deleted by: Useful to round up files created or deleted by a particular Active Directory user

Condusiv reports that the new search interface and file recovery are also significantly faster than in previous Undelete versions.

Searching for lost files in Undelete 11

Searching for lost files in Undelete 11

Cloud-based Recovery Bin ^

By default, Undelete Server maintains a separate Recovery Bin for each volume on the server. You can override this in Global Settings and use a single, common Bin for all volumes.

Undelete 11 now lets you point to synchronized cloud storage as your common bin directory location. In the next screenshot, I configured my Undelete Server instance to use a OneDrive folder. The benefit here is that your Recovery Bin contents are now globally available to you and your fellow administrators.

Cloud based common Recovery Bin in Undelete 11 Server

Cloud based common Recovery Bin in Undelete 11 Server

File inclusion list ^

Let's face it—there are some "junk" or ultra-low priority files you don't want to consume space in your Recovery Bin. Previous Undelete versions gave administrators an Exclusion list feature which allows the opportunity to specify the volumes, folders, files, and file formats that Undelete Server will exclude—that feature still exists in Undelete 11.

What's new is the Inclusion list. Here we can add filters for those undesired file types. Check out the next figure—Condusiv helpfully populates the exclusion list with common "junk" file types (you can remove any entries you want Undelete to track).

Recovery Bin exclusion list—these assets will not be saved in Undelete 11

Recovery Bin exclusion list—these assets will not be saved in Undelete 11

Drag-and-drop support ^

Undelete 11 now allows admins or users to drag and drop files from the Recovery Bin to a local drive.

Drag and drop is a convenient feature

Drag and drop is a convenient feature

For further information ^

I encourage you to download the Undelete 11 30-day free trial and see how the software performs in your environment. Here's a link to the purchase page if you're interested.

Overall, I'm a huge fan of Undelete Server because the software works as advertised and is dead simple to use. Once again, I can't overemphasize how wonderful the file recovery convenience is in Undelete as opposed to horsing around with backup archives or even the Windows Previous Versions client.

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